The National Restaurant Association Show in Chicago hosts over 40,000 attendees and 2,300 exhibitors over the course of 4 days in May. The choices one has for food, drink, and education are seemingly endless. Say nothing of the countless products and services that enable owners, operators, and leaders to innovate their restaurant/hospitality business.
Given four days and hundreds of conversations with all types of vendors at the NRA Show, I was #FiredUp to get a better understanding of how companies were using this opportunity, essentially confined to large space with 40,000 industry peers, to network and recruit. Could there be a better time to try to stand out as an employer of choice, or upgrade your sales talent pipeline?
Much to my surprise, with one exception, the resounding response was, “We’re not approaching hiring at this show.” “Ben, we’re really just here to sell our product. Hiring or looking for talent really isn’t on our radar.”
What!? Why is that? It was shocking to me that leaders and representatives from well over 5000 companies come together and almost NO-ONE was considering this an opportunity to upgrade their workforce.
The answer has to do with subtlety. No company wants to come off like they’re poaching the competition in plain sight. Leaders don’t want to be seen fraternizing with the enemy or conducting interviews at their booth. However, when pressed most people I spoke with conceded that perhaps they we’re missing the chance to be an opportunistic hunter.
Companies can now use technology to subtly let people know they are interested in hiring. A polite proactive text, such as “Your profile is impressive, want to chat,” that requires a simple “sure” is much likely to yield response than an cold email pointing to a long web application form. Inviting call to action such as “Text this number to learn about our Careers,” or “Refer a friend for a rewarding Career with XYZ Company, Text 555-555-5555 Now,” followed by a conversational engagement delivers a lot more applicants than the traditional methods of organizing occasional “open house” recruiting events where candidates scarcely show up.
When a business chooses to invest in attending an event, it’s possible to have multiple missions. Sales people know their ABC’s – Always Be Closing. Leader’s know their most important asset is their people. A.B.R. – Always Be Recruiting. If you don’t have the technology today to complete your mission, it’s worthwhile to investigate solutions like AllyO that will help you get the most from future events. The next great producer, leader, or visionary could have just walked by your booth!
AllyO is an AI technology company founded a simple mission – make recruiting delightful and efficient for everyone. It addresses the traditional inefficiencies of lost applicants and conversions due to poor candidate experience, high cost of recruiting due to overburdening of menial tasks on hiring teams, and lack of visibility and control for HR leadership. It utilizes deep workflow conversational AI to fully automate end to end recruiting workflow by intelligently engaging via texting over mobile and web. It is used by Fortune 500 enterprises that have experienced 2-6X increase in applicant capture and conversion rate, 91% application completion rate, and over 50% reduction in cost and time to hire. AllyO is backed by leading investors such as Google, Randstad Innovation Fund, Bain Capital Ventures and Cervin Ventures.
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